Rangers’ Pérez outduels Blackburn, A’s in All-Star matchup

Jul 24, 2022, 4:41 AM | Updated: 5:45 pm

Oakland Athletics' Sheldon Neuse (26) reacts after striking out against Texas Rangers starting pitc...

Oakland Athletics' Sheldon Neuse (26) reacts after striking out against Texas Rangers starting pitcher Martín Pérez during the seventh inning of a baseball game in Oakland, Calif., Sunday, July 24, 2022. (AP Photo/Godofredo A. Vásquez)

(AP Photo/Godofredo A. Vásquez)

OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) — Martín Pérez allowed four hits over seven strong innings to extend his dominant undefeated streak and beat fellow All-Star Paul Blackburn, leading the Texas Rangers to an 11-8 victory over the Oakland Athletics on Sunday.

Pérez (8-2) had six strikeouts and won his career-best eighth straight decision. The first-time All-Star is unbeaten in his last 17 starts, passing Kyle Gibson for the Rangers’ single-season franchise record.

“I (didn’t) even know that I have that kind of number,” Pérez said. “I’m just looking to feel comfortable every time when I go out there. How I believe in myself now – I know who I am and what I can do on the mound – is great.”

Texas nearly let it all go to waste.

Trailing 11-1, the A’s scored four runs off Garrett Richards in the eighth, then hit three consecutive home runs off Brett Martin in the ninth. Martin got Stephen Piscotty to strike out swinging and Dermis Garcia grounded out to end it.

“I don’t know if we took our foot off the gas a little bit but we weren’t executing pitches,” Rangers manager Chris Woodward said. “Brett’s been so good for us but he kind of gave in on a lot of those pitches and gave them something over the heart of the plate to hit. He’s better than that and he knows that.”

Corey Seager hit his 23rd home run. Adolis García also connected and had a career-high four hits and three RBIs as the Rangers won for the second time in eight games. Jonah Heim matched a team record with three doubles on a day when eight Texas players had at least one hit and one RBI.

Mixing a strong slider and effective change-up, Pérez induced 11 groundouts and retired 11 of 12 before walking Dermis Garcia leading off the fifth. Garcia scored on Nick Allen’s sacrifice fly.

“We needed him to go kind of deep,” Woodward said. “We were running a little thin from yesterday’s game and thank goodness he did because we needed all seven of those innings.”

In three road starts against the A’s this season, Pérez has a 0.90 ERA.

“When you’re facing the same team a lot of times you have a better idea. Sometimes you have to change, but if you don’t show me anything why do we need to change?” Pérez said. “How I move the ball I think is not comfortable for them, that’s what I see.”

Blackburn (6-6) is headed the opposite direction. Winless since June 16, the A’s right-hander allowed 10 earned runs in 4 1/3 innings in his first start since the break. The 10 earned runs are tied for most in the majors this season.

“The first couple of innings I felt like I was just too quick and then I tried to slow down, and I felt like I was too slow,” Blackburn said. “I tried to find a happy medium to get in a rhythm out there, and it just didn’t happen.”

García hit a towering two-run homer to left in the first, one pitch after Heim’s RBI double. García also singled and scored in the third, walked and scored in the fifth, hit an RBI single in the sixth and singled again in the eighth.

Seager homered off Blackburn to jump-start a six-run fifth inning for Texas. Kole Calhoun had a two-run single in the frame while Ezequiel Duran, Josh Smith and Marcus Semien all drove in runs.

Piscotty homered as part of Oakland’s four-run eighth.

The A’s had won three straight before falling short of their first series sweep since last September.

Oakland’s three straight home runs by Sean Murphy, Chad Pinder and Tony Kemp marked the first time since April 15, 2006, that the A’s have gone back-to-back-to-back.


One day after a sliding back-handed catch in foul territory near the protective tarp while playing left field, Smith made another web gem – this time as a third baseman – when he chased down pinch-hitter Seth Brown’s pop-up near the line in left field.


Rangers: Seager left for unknown reasons in the sixth inning.


Rangers: RHP Glenn Otto (4-6, 5.40 ERA) makes a second consecutive start against the Mariners on Monday in Seattle. Otto has lost four of his five start since coming off the Injured List.

Athletics: RHP Adam Oller (0-3, 8.56) faces the division-leading Astros on Monday in the first of three games against Houston.


More AP MLB: https://apnews.com/tag/MLB and https://twitter.com/AP_Sports

Copyright © The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.


Associated Press

Ex-Packer Guion gets 1 year for domestic violence assault

GREEN BAY, Wis. (AP) — Former Green Bay Packers defensive tackle Letroy Guion was sentenced to one year in jail after pleading no contest in a domestic violence assault at his home last fall. Brown County Circuit Court Judge Thomas Walsh also ordered Guion on Tuesday to serve three years’ probation and complete a domestic […]

1 year ago

Joe Jarzynka...

Associated Press

Durant eager for Suns debut vs. Hornets after knee injury

CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) — Kevin Durant has been through quite a bit during his 15-year NBA career — but joining a new team midway through the season is a new one for the 13-time All-Star. The 34-year-old Durant doesn’t seem all that worried. Durant makes his highly anticipated Phoenix Suns debut on Wednesday night against […]

1 year ago

FILE - Miami Dolphins head coach Brian Flores stands on the sideline during the second half of an N...

Associated Press

Judge: NFL coach can press discrimination claims in court

NEW YORK (AP) — NFL Coach Brian Flores can pursue some of his discrimination claims against the league and its teams in court rather than through arbitration, a judge ruled Wednesday. The written decision by Judge Valerie Caproni in Manhattan was issued months after lawyers for the league tried to get the lawsuit moved to […]

1 year ago

Chicago Blackhawks goaltender Alex Stalock cools off in the first period during an NHL hockey game ...

Associated Press

Kane trade reinforces hard reality of Blackhawks rebuild

CHICAGO (AP) — After days of speculation, the harsh reality of the Chicago Blackhawks’ situation was reinforced by one move in a flurry of transactions ahead of the NHL trade deadline. Showtime is over, at least in Chicago, and a seemingly bright future is, well, way off in the distance. The reverberations of Chicago’s decision […]

1 year ago

FILE -  Yves Jean-Bart, president of the Haitian Football Federation, wearing a protective face mas...

Associated Press

Disgraced ex-Haitian soccer president announces he’s back

PORT-AU-PRINCE, Haiti (AP) — Haiti’s former soccer federation president whose lifetime ban from sport over sexual abuse allegations was overturned last month announced Wednesday that he is reclaiming his position. Yves Jean-Bart’s defiant announcement could lead to a standoff with FIFA, which already has appointed an emergency management committee to lead the Haitian Football Association […]

1 year ago

FILE - Green Bay Packers' Aaron Rodgers walks off the field after an NFL football game against the ...

Associated Press

Rodgers says decision on future will come ‘soon enough’

GREEN BAY, Wis. (AP) — Aaron Rodgers says he will make a decision on his future “soon enough” as the four-time MVP quarterback ponders whether to play next season and if his future remains with the Green Bay Packers. Rodgers, 39, discussed his future while speaking on an episode of the “Aubrey Marcus Podcast” that […]

1 year ago

Rangers’ Pérez outduels Blackburn, A’s in All-Star matchup